21 November, 2009

East Grinstead and Oxted

I was told I'd be bored by East Grinstead but really it wasn't that bad. The town is noted for having the longest run of 16th Century buildings in the country and I've no reason to doubt that. It is in the North East corner of West Sussex and the old buildings are well used.

One is the Sackville College an almshouse. We met the Sackvilles at Knole, if you remember, but it was here that they founded their old people's home.

Back in the 1960s the inmates had to wear a uniform - in the museum there was one of the old uniforms - a black dress and a black cloak. In the 1960s the inmates finally rebelled and made a bonfire of the uniforms! I hope they can now wear their own clothes.

The church of St Swithun was rebuilt in the 18th century, unudually in the gothic style. Even inside the church is hard to date. Probably it was rebuilt to be much the same as before.

So I wasn't bored with East Grinstead and might even go back there at some point.

The train back from East Grinstead calles at Oxted also. Now Oxted looked meadieval but I suspected it was all 1930s fakery or maybe 1890s fakery. Certianly most of the housing was of the mid 20th century. Oxted was quite nice with a tudor cinema and the church of St Mary - you can't fake that!

Oxted is also on the meridian.

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